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Conservative leader to testify as Polish MPs probe 2020 postal vote plan

24.05.2024 08:00
Poland's conservative leader Jarosław Kaczyński is expected to be questioned on Friday in an ongoing probe into measures taken by the authorities in 2020 to hold the country's presidential election as a postal vote.
Polands conservative leader Jarosław Kaczyński.
Poland's conservative leader Jarosław Kaczyński.PAP/Łukasz Gągulski

A Polish parliamentary commission in December began investigating disputed steps taken by Poland's previous conservative government to hold the 2020 presidential elections in the form of postal voting amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

The inquiry was launched after the lower house of Poland's parliament, the Sejm, on December 7 voted unanimously to set up a special parliamentary panel to investigate suspected irregularities.

Poland's presidential election was initially scheduled to take place on May 10, 2020, in the middle of the first wave of the coronavirus pandemic.

The conservative Law and Justice (PiS) government made preparations for a postal ballot, arguing that it could be held safely despite a rising number of COVID-19 cases and deaths.

Election monitors, opposition candidates and EU officials criticised the plan, saying the decision to change electoral law allowing for the mail vote was rushed and could prevent the ballot from being free and fair, the Reuters news agency has reported.

The plan to hold the election on May 10 was eventually abandoned and the ballot was conducted via a mixed system of postal and traditional in-person voting in two rounds, in June and July, resulting in a second term for incumbent Andrzej Duda.

Earlier this year, Kaczyński testified in a probe into suspected cases of illegal spyware use under the previous government.


Source: IAR, PAP